konrath[1] Speaking of Joe Konrath, he made a blog post a few days ago stating that as of 9/21/10, his overall e-book sales had topped the 100,000 mark. He is selling over 7,000 e-books per month via Amazon alone, and Amazon represents almost 3/4 of his total e-book sales.

He also notes that the poorest-performing e-books are the ones sold through Hyperion, the publisher who still controls the first six books in his Jacqueline “Jack” Daniels mystery series. Averaging out the sales, he estimates he has earned $34 per month per title from these books, compared to the $1,700 per month that his self-published e-books are making him.

In comparing the prices and relative royalty rates, Konrath notes that he earns roughly twice as much on each Amazon e-book that retails for only about 3/5 the price of Hyperion’s. He estimates that if he had the e-book rights, he would be earning three times as much money on the Hyperion titles as he does now ($102,000 rather than $33.696). “Do I want my books to go out of print? Hell yeah.”

The post is long and well worth reading, as he goes into other e-book advantages and more performance statistics and estimates too lengthy to recount here. Suffice it to say Konrath is ecstatic about the distribution possibilities offered by e-books, is greatly disappointed by how his properties currently handled by traditional publishers are performing, and feels that publishers are pricing e-books considerably higher than they ought to.

I’m glad that Konrath is seeing such success with his Amazon-published books, though it’s hard to say whether that level of success could be found by just anyone. After all, Konrath managed to build up an audience through traditional publishing by Hyperion before he ever got into e-books.


  1. Until I got my Kindle and picked up a book he offered for free…I had never heard of him. Hmmm…I have since read almost all of the books he has available on the Kindle.

  2. The man has a serious grudge against his publishers – sad, considering he got not only multiple book contracts but also thousands of dollars in advances.

    I doubt he’ll ever be able to get a deal with another publisher when this utopia of his falls through. He’s become a pulp writer churning out substandard stories in order to keep his fans happy.


  3. Same here, Wendy. I found him via a link from the blog of another author who was pitching a fit over Konrath’s piracy experiment. I took him up on his free book offer, liked it enough to make a Paypal donation to him for it, and have since read at least half of his stories. Some may not like him as a writer, but it’s hard to argue with his marketing abilities.

  4. I wish Amazon would let us offer one of our Kindle Edition ebooks for free; that’s one of the ways that Konrath said he managed to get so popular so quickly on Kindle. Unfortunately for the average writer you must charge at lease 99 cents.

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